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  • Writer's pictureAlyssa Altomonte

Understanding Why Your "Go-To" Social Media Strategy Isn't Working Anymore

A social media manager taking a photo

Social media sometimes feels impossible to keep up with. Every day there’s a new sound trending, one celebrity is “canceled” and another is everyone’s new favorite, and opinions and interests are changing faster than ever before. Social media has created this need for instant gratification- everything is immediate, which means our attention is shifting faster every day.

So, how do you keep up?

Understanding Platform Dynamics

First, each platform is different. Not only do the content forms that do best differ on each one, but so do the demographics and usage trends. For example, the majority of Facebook's users are between ages 25-34 and over half of its users are male. Only 32% of American teenagers use it, and the average user is only on it for 3.8 hours per week. In contrast, TikTok is the third most popular app amongst teens, with 67% of people aged 18-19 using the app. On average, TikTok users spend close to 7 hours on the app each week.

Tailoring campaigns for each platform is crucial. TikTok users prefer humorous, low-effort videos, whereas a post on Facebook for your business may be more formal, with a good quality photo or graphic. While some pieces of content may transfer well to all platforms, others will not. See what performs well on each of your platforms and learn from it. Don’t post the same reel to every single account. While your audience may be similar across platforms, what they are looking for from you on TikTok versus Instagram can be different.

Navigating Content Trends

Recently, low-effort short-form videos have been the highest-performing forms of content on most platforms. While there are exceptions to this, most social media gurus will tell you that if you want to increase your reach organically, you need to post more reels. But many are predicting a comeback of professional-grade videos with high-quality visuals. TikTok, previously favoring short-form vertical videos, is now favoring horizontal videos longer than 5 minutes. If you don’t make an effort to keep up with algorithms and trends, you are missing out on potentially pivotal moments for your social media growth.

Community Building and Authenticity

Community building is becoming more important every day. Consumers no longer respond to funny commercials or beautifully designed ads as they once did. They want to understand you and feel connected. What do you stand for? Do you appreciate and listen to your customers? What makes you, you? A growing way companies are leaning into this is moving away from influencer marketing and more toward user-generated content (UGC). A video of a real user reviewing the product is going to go much further than an aesthetic montage. While there is absolutely value in both types of videos, UGC helps companies create trust amongst their consumers. 

Nike's # JustDoIt campaign serves as a great example of the power of community-driven marketing. By encouraging consumers to share their own stories and content using the hashtag, Nike created a community centered around their brand. This not only strengthened brand loyalty but also amplified Nike's message, demonstrating the impact of authentic, user-generated content in today's social media landscape. You don’t have to be Nike to create a community around your brand, you just have to truly understand your consumer. 

Adapting Strategies

Be flexible and open to change. The video that went viral yesterday won’t work twice. So, reassess your strategies, experiment with new formats, and be willing to pivot when necessary. A stubborn approach to “stick to what’s working” is not going to be helpful to you in the long run.

In an ideal world, you should keep an eye on conversations, trends, and feedback in real-time. Whether it's capitalizing on a viral meme or addressing a customer concern before it snowballs into a PR crisis, being timely is going to take you far.

Consumers are bombarded with content from all angles. What stands out? Authenticity. Real people stand out. Humanize your brand, show the people behind the logo, and genuinely engage and interact with your audience. Be transparent, honest, and responsive, even when it's challenging.

Unfortunately, social media is not something you learn the tricks of once and become really good at. It requires continuous learning and optimization. You have to analyze data, measure performance metrics, and use insights to refine strategies. Again, what works today may not work next month, so you have to be committed to ongoing education and adaptation.

Collaboration and Co-Creation

Finally, use collaboration and co-creation to your advantage. Partner with influencers and/or UGC creators, collaborate with other brands, and involve customers in the content creation process. This can add an essential authenticity to your social media presence.

The days of relying on a one-size-fits-all social media formula are long gone. To succeed in today's digital landscape, you have to be willing to evolve and adapt. By understanding the unique characteristics of each social media platform, staying on top of emerging trends, and creating genuine connections with your audience, you can ensure your social media strategy remains effective and impactful.


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